What's the deal with mindfulness?

I find that being in nature makes it easier for me to be more present and mindful

I find that being in nature makes it easier for me to be more present and mindful

Years ago, someone suggested to me that I would benefit from mindfulness and meditation.  I shrugged off it off. Yeah I was having some stress in my life, but how was sitting around doing nothing going to help? I associated meditation with being really out there and alternative.  

For some reason, I ended up signing up for a 6 week mindfulness meditation class. The first few weeks of the class I thought it was interesting enough, but it didn’t resonate.  I still didn’t get why some people were so into meditation.

This class had a one day silent mini-retreat.  By the end of the day, my mind was still and quiet. I could not remember the last time my mind wasn’t running with a to do list or some worry or concern.  My mind was just...quiet.  That’s when I knew there was something to this mindfulness stuff.

Since then, I’ve incorporated mindfulness into my personal and professional life. Personally, I find mindfulness brings me out my busy mind and helps me appreciate what’s right before me.  I’ve taken several trainings on mindful therapy techniques and have found it has a powerful impact on the people I work with. Whether it be a formal meditation practice, slowing down to really taste food during a meal, or taking a moment to step outside and absorb nature around us, mindfulness brings us out of our head and into our body and environment. It’s powerful stuff.